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Already burned out due to large classes and co-teacher!

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yanna08 yanna08 is offline
 
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yanna08
 
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Already burned out due to large classes and co-teacher!
Old 10-29-2017, 08:45 PM
 
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I know the school year has just started; however, I feel that it is my fault that I am in this situation. This is my 6th year at my school, each year has gotten worst and worst. I knew I should have left but did not have the strength to leave. Last year I had 17 students in my "small group" resource class. I had a para but she wasn't much support. I also had large co-taught classes with about 13 or more special education students. It was so bad that at the end, the general ed teacher asked me to pull them out most days, which I know is not what co-teaching is. Well fast forward to this school year, I have an even worst situation. I have a general education homeroom class for starters. There are over 30 students in it. I have this homeroom because we no longer have an SST person, so these students 1st period teacher is off that period to do 6th grade SSTs. Well my 1st period co-taught class has 16 special education students. The general ed teacher is a bully and gets what she wants pretty much. She bullies the students as well as adults. She talks to the students negative, call them names, and reminds them that they are different every chance she gets. The students all want to be removed from her classroom. Well, now she is throwing the anger towards me. She asked if I could get to her class earlier, which I can't do to my homeroom. She also stated that we are not on the same page. What page? She is always arguing and yelling with students, not to mention, she does not follow the curriculum. Also, my "small group" class this year has 18 students. I have a para again but they do not help as much. It is a mess. I have 2 other co-taught Social Studies classes. They have 18 students in them as well. I am sure we are not following the law but don't know what to do about it. I am so stressed. I have 4 IEPs coming up in November. I have no time to do all these IEPs when we have meetings every day during planning and keep up with all the other responsibilities. I am on the verge of going to the doctor for stress because it is so bad! Please advise. I know I wrote a lot. I started to put this on the vent board but wanted to try this one first.


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Old 10-29-2017, 10:19 PM
 
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I've been a special ed. resource teacher in grades K-12, but never experienced your numbers in middle school. You may want to consider discussing your predicament with your district's Director of Special Education. If that falls on deaf ears, you can then try talking to the county office that oversees special education services that are provided by the districts in the area - there should be a director in this office that you can consult.
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Old 10-30-2017, 05:43 PM
 
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Thank you so much for your response. I have been teaching since 2004 and I have never experienced these numbers either. The most students I have had in a class were 10 and likewise for caseload, now it is almost double that number. I have 4 IEPs coming up and a re-determination. 2 of my caseload students have attorneys. Not to mention the school has us meeting everyday due to trying to increase our CCRPI. It is too much for a teacher to handle. I will definitely follow your advice. It seems as if talking to the Lead Sped Teacher and Principal is getting my teammate and I nowhere.
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Old 10-30-2017, 06:21 PM
 
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Just curious what CCRPI means? Like you said "It's just too much for a teacher to handle" Elementary Resource teacher here and my mantra this year has been "It's just too much!" Too many students, too many behaviors, too many needs!
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Old 10-30-2017, 07:28 PM
 
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You are your students' only advocate at this point. If you don't go to bat for them, no one will.

You are in a lose-lose situation. If you/they are not successful, you will be blamed. And if you are successful, it will only get worse or at least stay bad as they will think you can handle it.

First off, paras can make or break the situation. You need to train the paras to meet the need of your students. The paras should know the expectations and rules for the class and have specific jobs to do with specific students.

It may feel awful at first. It will feel like prepping the paras adds more work to an already impossible load. But once you get them trained, it will pay off for you as they will be more independent and helpful.

Then get super organized with your IEPs and reevals. Make the process as smooth as possible. That way anytime you do get a plan time or a few minutes extra you are ready to plug stuff in where necessary.

I don't often bring student work home but I often fill out IEP stuff there. I can take home just my documentation binder and do all kinds of activities on our SpEd program from there.

I still need to improve though. I need to set all my IEPs and reevals to earlier due dates to make sure they are on time without a huge crunch.

Good luck no matter what. You need a break somewhere so I hope it comes soon.


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Old 10-30-2017, 08:00 PM
 
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Walk Don't Run, CCRPI is College and Career Readiness Performance Index. All schools in GA are rated using the scores from this.
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Old 10-30-2017, 08:05 PM
 
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whatever, I agree with you 100%.

Yes, paras can make or break you. I am in the process of training my female para; however, she will be out for maternity leave next week. I will have a sub in her place. I have a student who has a one-on-one also. He is a young male. He talks with the students during instruction, plays with them and gets them off task. I have talked with him about it but he still does it although not as much.

I am so stressed because I am always organized and up to date with my IEPs, that is what is driving me crazy, with all the staff meetings during my planning, I can't seem to keep up. I am already working at home. I am grading papers, entering grades and have done a couple IEPs already. I have 4 coming in a couple weeks and I have no time to progress monitor being that I have the general ed homeroom. It is so crazy!

Our IEPs are all due by February but some are coming up now. The Lead Teacher says that she will help me but has not as of yet and they are due the second week in November. I do not want them to become overdue.
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Old 11-02-2017, 10:23 PM
 
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As a former resource teacher, there were times when I had multiple annual reviews, triennials and new referrals all due at about the same time. Fortunately, my principal acknowledged my predicament and arranged for a sub to cover my groups for several days that I used for testing and IEP meetings. My colleague who taught SDC (Self-contained Day Class) and I shared the sub so that we could attend our meetings all day long. If your P. is reluctant to use sub days to help you out, talk to your district administrator (Director of Special Education) who may have access to additional funds that can be used for a sub. Donít be shy about asking for as many days as you need - sometimes better to spread them out. For example, two days for week 1, three days for week 2 and three days for week 3. If you approach them in a professional manner and point out that the backlog is due to factors beyond your control, you should be able to get some support. Let us know how it turns out!
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